Private Marvin Wheaton


The following note on Marvin Wheaton is from Lori Adams: LAdams9221@aol.com

The following is a direct quote of "The Civil War years" as written by Frank R. Wheaton in his Stories of the Wheaton Family and Other Lent Hill Folks:

Previous to the Marvin story - one brother, Alvin Sherman, was already serving in the 104th and another brother lied about his age and then came back home.

"Meanwhile, there came a second call for volunteers and then finally, the long-dreaded draft. This draft took Marvin, the "sickly" member of the family. Vainly they pleaded ill-health for Marvin. The examining official passed him, as they sometimes did, with the remark, "It'll make a man of him". As if the good healthy work, food and air on the Hill had never been his. He was hurried to training camp in Elmira, but the official's remark was altogether too optimistic. His health did not improve.

"Now, the family had occasion to worry plenty. One son was at the front and in, what seemed to them, constant danger. Another who had been desperately watched over all his life at home, exposed to the rigors and hardships of a training camp.

"To add to all this, news reached the Hill of the second battle of Bull Run....(Marvin's brother is listed as missing in action)....

"So--one day the Wheaton family had just finished their noon day meal when one of the younger boys called attention of all to a man turning into their land. He was rather thin in appearance and seemed to be ill, but when he came opposite the row of beehives, he climbed quickly over the fence, walked straight to the hives and began petting the bees. Gathering up handfuls of them, he poured them over his head and body. It was indisputably Marvin, the sickly son. It had been his job to look after the bees. He had been so homesick and the bees were his first contact with "home folks" that he relieved his feelings in this manner. He had contracted TB in training camp, and had been given a "sickness discharge" and had been sent home. How good home looked to him and how happy he was to be back. How hard the whole family tried to make him happy and comfortable. It could not help--one week after his arrival, they buried him in the family cemetery"


I have 3 photocopies of documents for Marvin:

The first one says: Hospital number 7836, Marvin S. Wheaton, age 23, nativity America, single of Cohocton, listing his brothers address, Rank, private, Co. B, 76th NY. Admitted May 4, 1864 with Bronchitis chronic.

Document 2 states: Record of death and interment- Marvin S, Wheaton (308) hospital number of deceased-11159. Cause of death: hydro-thorax and stranguary. References and remarks-died at his home while on Furlough at Prattsburg, NY. Date of Death and burial-July 17, 1864.

Document 3, from Satterlee USA General Hospital, states: I, Samuel Wheaton of Prattsburg, certify that I am the father of Marvin who died at him July 17, 1864. I further acknowledge the receipt of his effects from TT Hayes, surgeon USV in charge of hospital - One great coat, two pairs of socks, one blanket, one pair of gloves. This is signed by Samuel and his other son, Alvin Sherman.


The remaining Wheaton brother had an eventful service - Alvin, whom they called "Sherman", had his arm amputated by a Confederate doctor after being listed as "missing in action" after the second battle of Bull Run. He was also in attendance in Fords Theater the night Abe Lincoln was shot.


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- Last Updated December 24, 1999